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                                 Shedding light on car insurance savings

                                 Seven strategies for new car buyers

                                  Tips for protecting boats and motorcycles

                                 Four questions to get the right auto insurance

                                 Three tips to get your vacation off to a worry-free start

                                 Eight tips for the road ahead

 

Shedding Light On Car Insurance Savings

                                 It can be easier than you think to put the brakes on high auto insurance rates – as an independent agency, Insurance Concepts can help! 
                                We can review your policy and possibly help you find a variety of illuminating ways to save money. Here are some things you may want to
                                 consider:

                              • Ask us to check several companies’ rates. This is the single most important thing you can do to get the best possible rate—and we can do it
                                 for you quickly and easily. The difference between the highest and lowest rate available to you from different companies could vary by
                                 hundreds of dollars.

                              • Reduce or drop physical damage coverage on an older car. Depending on your car’s age and where you live, comprehensive and collision
                                 coverage may not be worth keeping. We can give you advice on whether it makes sense to reduce or drop this coverage altogether.

                              • Raise your deductible. According to the Insurance Information Institute, raising your deductible from $200 to $500 could reduce your
                                 collision and comprehensive cost by 15 to 30 percent. In addition, because the average driver files a collision claim only once every ten
                                 years, odds are that over the lifetime of your car, a higher deductible will save you money. We can show you how raising your deductible 
                                will lower your premium.

                              • Look for discounts. Many insurance companies reduce premiums for certain driver traits or car features. For example: being a homeowner
                                for more than three years, nonsmoker, nondrinker, students with good grades, senior citizens who have taken an approved defensive driving
                                course, people who only drive for pleasure, cars kept in garages, antilock brakes, antitheft devices, air bags, etc. Ask us to check.

                              • Don’t assume having your car and home insured by the same company is the best option. Because auto insurance rates vary so much from
                                company to company, it may make sense for you to have your car and home insured by separate companies. Let’s talk about it.

                                To learn more about all an independent agency can offer you, call Insurance Concepts 352 669 7999.

 

                                Seven Shopping Strategies For New Car Buyers

                               New car shopping can be a lot of fun, especially if you’re a car enthusiast. But others can find the experience stressful and tedious. Either way,
                               there’s a lot to think about. According to a survey of car shoppers, overall purchase price is the most important factor when shopping for a
                               new car (46 percent), followed by make and model (31 percent).

                               Safety and performance come in a distant third, tied at seven percent. But whether you’re turned on or turned off by the dizzying array of car
                              choices, trim options, “expert” reviews, incentives and other deals, it definitely pays to approach car buying strategically.

                              So if you’re in the market for a new vehicle and you find yourself having trouble keeping a clear head, just keep these strategies, courtesy of
                              Insurance Concepts, in mind:

                              1.  Decide how much money you can spend and what type of vehicle best suits your needs. Just looking for the basic transport capability of a
                                   small or medium sedan? Or do you need the hauling capacity of a van or SUV? Something practical? Something sporty? Something in
                                   between?

                              2. Research crash tests and accident data available from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

                              3. Shop around for financing. If you can, apply for and get approval for a loan from a bank, credit union or other financier before you even visit
                                  the dealership.  Being a “cash buyer” gives you an advantage when you do finally meet with the dealership’s financing person.

                              4. Test drive the car. Try to drive in conditions that will be similar to those under which you’ll drive every day.

                              5. Check pricing for your desired make and model at two or three dealerships and use that information to help you negotiate the best deal.

                              6. Get a firm quote, in writing. This should include not only the cost of the car, but any fees and the sales tax.

                              7. Inspect your new car carefully before driving off the lot. Make sure all the options you’ve ordered are included and that the body and paint
                                  are free of scratches or dents.

                                  Finally, it’s important to consider the cost of auto insurance, although it seems that few people realize that what they pay for insurance can
                                  add significantly to the vehicle’s total cost. Wise car buyers know to shop around for insurance and find out how costs compare. They also
                                  know to visit an independent insurance agency – like Insurance Concepts. We can check with several companies to find the best
                                  combination of coverage and price. 

 

                           Tips For Protecting Boats And Motorcycles

                                  Before you take your motorcycle on the road or put your boat on the water, it may pay to be certain your insurance is ship-shape.
                                  Motorcycles and boats are often significant investments, and the right insurance policy can help protect them. Here are a few tips, courtesy
                                  of Insurance Concepts:

                                  Evaluate your specific needs. Insuring a boat or a motorcycle is different than insuring your car or home. A specialized motorcycle policy, for
                                  instance, can provide coverage for custom paint jobs and aftermarket equipment that might not be covered if the bike were just added to a
                                  generic auto policy.

                                  Similarly, a specialized boat policy could cover things like the cost to replace lost or damaged fishing gear and costly services such as
                                  emergency on-water towing and fuel-spill cleanup. You probably wouldn't get this coverage by adding a boat to a homeowner's policy. 

                                  Consult with an independent agency - like Insurance Concepts. Unlike "captive" agents who represent only one company, independent
                                  insurance agents and brokers are licensed insurance professionals who represent several companies. They can offer you a variety of
                                  coverages, review and evaluate your policies, suggest new coverage options that meet your changing needs and answer your questions. "An
                                  independent insurance agent or broker can make sure you have the specialized coverage you need to protect your boat or bike," said Jim
                                  Lloyd, of the Progressive Group of Insurance Companies. "Some insurance companies provide only bare-bones protection for your boat or
                                  motorcycle by simply adding it onto your existing auto or homeowner's policy, but independent agents and brokers can review and evaluate
                                  your needs to help match you with the company that will provide you with the combination of specialized coverage, service and price that's
                                  best for you." 
 

                                Four Questions To Get The Right Auto Insurance  

                               Using the right tool for a job is key to success in any profession. Experts say the same principle applies when selecting an auto insurance policy.
                               Having the right type of policy can help ensure that you, your employees and your business are all protected in the unfortunate event that one of 
                               your vehicles is involved in an accident.  If you're a business owner and you or your employees use a vehicle for business-related deliveries or to 
                               carry certain materials to and from a job site, you may need a commercial auto insurance policy that's tailored to more closely suit the needs-and 
                               risks-of a business vehicle operator.  Here are some questions that can help you determine if you might need a commercial auto policy instead of 
                               a personal auto policy, courtesy of Insurance Concepts: 
                               o Do you need more liability coverage than your personal auto policy provides? Generally, a commercial auto policy  provides higher limits of 
                 liability, but less or no coverage in areas that are typically not associated with commercial auto risks. 
                               o Do you need special coverage for situations associated with con-ducting business? Commercial auto policies also usually offer certain coverages
                                -such as hired and non-owned auto coverage and coverage for towing a trailer for business use-that are not available with personal auto policies. 
                               o Do you need to list any employees as drivers? You can do this with a commercial auto insurance policy. 
                               o Do you use your vehicle for business purposes? If you use your vehicle for things like pizza or newspaper delivery, catering, door-to-door 
                                  consulting service, landscaping or snowplowing service, logging business, day care/church retreat van service and/or farm-to-market delivery, 
                                  you might need a commercial auto policy. 
                                  Insurance Concepts is an independent insurance agency - trained, licensed insurance professionals who offer personal service and advice. 
                                  We can help match you with the type of policy that best suits your needs and those of your company.
 
                           Three Tips To Help Your Vacation Get Off To A Worry-Free Start   
                                 With vacation season in full swing, you may be in the process of planning an annual getaway. While most people spend lots 
                                 of time looking for ways to maximize their budget, one costly decision is often left to the last minute-whether to buy the
                                 optional insurance offered by a rental car company.
                                 "Deciding whether to buy 'damage waivers' or insurance at the rental car counter can be a confusing experience-especially 
                                  if you don't know if you're already covered by your personal auto insurance policy," said Rick Crawley of the Progressive 
                                  Group of Insurance Companies. "Optional rental car insurance can cost between $7 and $25 per day, depending on the rental 
                                  car company, vehicle make and model and type of waiver. Those daily charges can significantly add to the cost of your 
                                  rental." 
                                  Follow these three tips, courtesy of Insurance Concepts, to help you decide whether or not you should buy the coverage:
                              1. Consult with an independent insurance agency - like Insurance Concepts. As licensed insurance professionals, independent 
                                  insurance agents and brokers can review and evaluate your policies to find out if the coverage you have on your 
                                  personal vehicle provides protection for you in a rental car.
                              2. Check with your credit card company. Some credit card companies provide coverage at no charge if you use their card 
                                  to charge the cost of the rental. However, some restrictions may apply so be sure to ask for a description of the exact
                                  coverages provided.

                              3. Take your personal auto insurance policy and details of your coverages with you to the rental car counter. You may be 
                                  asked a question that these papers can help answer-or, if you're in doubt, you'll have your agent's name and phone 
                                  number readily available. "We want people to have the information they need to make more informed decisions about car 
                                  insurance," said Crawley."Knowing whether you need to buy additional coverage can save you money and give you peace of 
                                  mind so you can enjoy your vacation. Don't start off your trip questioning your decisions-take control by talking with 
                                  your independent agent or broker and knowing the answers to those inevitable questions." 
 
                           Eight Tips For The Road Ahead Be Safe, Be Smart On A Long-Distance Road Trip
                                 Whether you're traveling alone, with a buddy or with your spouse and a car full of kids, there are few things more 
                                "American" than the long-distance road trip. Countless vacation travelers will drive the highways looking for fun and 
                                 making memories with every mile. If traveling down the "holiday road" is in your plans, take the time to prepare for your 
                                 trip. You'll have a more enjoyable vacation if you plan carefully. Here are a few driving tips, courtesy of Insurance Concepts:
                                 1) Maintain your car. Make sure your vehicle is up to date on its maintenance schedule, and be sure to check the battery 
                                     and tires. 
                                 2) Plan your trip and know where you're going. Call ahead for proper and safe directions to get you to your destination 
                                     safely and have maps of the area on hand to help you navigate once you are off the main road. You're more likely to 
                                     make good decisions, even in dangerous situations, if you're clearheaded and know where you're going. 
                                 3) Be alert. Seems obvious, but driver inattention is surely the cause of a lot of accidents. If you stay focused behind 
                                     the wheel and plan carefully, you will have a wonderful summer road trip. 
                                 4) Take precaution with a cell phone. Cell phones can be a lifesaver when you need immediate access to emergency services 
                                     after an accident. Keep your phone within easy reach and get to know its features. However, use it prudently. Reports 
                                     suggest that driving while talking on the phone increases accident rates. 
                                 5) Wear your seat belt. Whether or not it's required by law in the state through which you're driving, always wear your 
                                     seat belt as a safety precaution. 
                                 6) Protect your car against theft. Help deter criminals from taking your car with steering wheel locks, switches that 
                                     disable fuel or ignition systems, and electronic tracking devices. 
                                 7) If you're in an accident. Taking immediate steps if you've been in an accident can protect your family and your car 
                                     from further damage. Stop immediately and make sure your car is not blocking traffic. Turn off your car to keep it from
                                     overheating or catching fire. Warn oncoming cars using road flares or orange triangle reflectors. After you have 
                                     protected yourself and your family, call your insurance company immediately. 
                                 8) Make sure your auto insurance is up to date. Before you even leave the driveway, you want to be sure you're protected 
                                     when you're on the road and far from home. An independent insurance agent or broker can provide the personal service 
                                     and advice you need to travel in confidence.